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Top News Links: Wednesday, April 30

Demand for containers boosts IP profit

International Paper Co. posted a higher-than-expected quarterly profit on Wednesday due to rising North American demand for its corrugated shipping boxes. Revenue fell 1 percent to $7.01 billion. – Reuters

We’re poor, but we’re honest

Hawaii is tied with Alabama for being the most honest state in the U.S., according to the National Honesty Index. A project of Honest Tea, in July 2013, unmanned kiosks were set up in each state offering a bottle of tea for $1 on the honor system. In Hawaii and Alabama, 100% of the people who took a bottle paid for it. – KITV.com

Birmingham urged to get more global

Mark Brown, vice president of business retention and expansion at Birmingham Business Alliance, says businesses, communities and regions can grow their economies in a variety of ways, but finding new markets for their products and services can be a major contributor – one Birmingham hasn’t fully tapped. – al.com

Halliburton gambling on spill liability?

Investors seem to believe that Halliburton's liability for the 2011 Gulf oil spill will be limited to $1 billion or $2 billion at most, as the stock is trading at a multiple that is only slightly below its peers. The company may be contributing to this optimism by taking a reserve of only about $1.3 billion to cover its liability. – NASDAQ

Small business markers show uptick

U.S. small business employment increased in April, reversing a three-month trend of slow to no growth. Meanwhile, employees worked about the same number of hours, while their monthly wages increased slightly, according to an Intuit Inc. index. – BusinessWire

Mediators prepared for foreclosure work

Last year the Alabama Center for Dispute Resolution received a $500,000 grant as a part of the 2012 national mortgage settlement reached between five large mortgage servicers and several state attorneys general, including Alabama’s Luther Strange. Now nearly 40 new mediators are ready for work. – Selma Times Journal

Birmingham firms to build Montana hospital

Plans were announced recently to build a replacement hospital in Great Falls, Mont., for Great Falls Clinic Medical Center. Alabama companies involved include Capital Growth MedVest, project developer; Goodwyn, Mills & Cawood, project architect; and Brasfield & Gorrie, general contractor. – Brasfield & Gorrie news release

Cooper selected as Commonwealth chairman

Commonwealth National Bank has announced that Maj. General J. Gary Cooper, USMC (ret) has been chosen as the new chairman of the board, and Jacquitta Green was selected as vice-chair, after last week’s elections. – al.com

UA students picked for EcoCAR 3

Students from several disciplines across The University of Alabama will compete nationally over the next four years to design an advanced, energy-efficient vehicle, the U.S. Department of Energy and General Motors Co. have announced. UA is one of 16 institutions selected for the EcoCAR 3 competition. – AVTC History news release

VMR takes top awards at PRCA luncheon

VMR Agency received the top awards at the Public Relations Council of Alabama annual Medallions Awards Luncheon earlier this month. – al.com

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